Sunday, September 2, 2012


Local Politics

Advancing Education

MLA O'Mahony tours BC post secondary schools

Released by Jennifer Jones, NDP Caucus


ew Democrat advanced education critic Michelle Mungall and skills training critic Gwen O’Mahony will be visiting institutions across the province this fall to listen to the concerns of students and promote the New Democrat plan to improve access to learning opportunities for British Columbians.

“New Democrat Leader Adrian Dix has committed to bringing in a $100 million needs-based, non-repayable student grant program as a way to equalize opportunities to access advanced education,” said Mungall. “I’m looking forward to sharing the good news with students, listening to their concerns and sharing those concerns with my caucus.”

“Up to 80 per cent of new jobs created over the next decade will require some form of advanced education or skills training,” said O’Mahony. “That’s why British Columbians need a government that’s committed to expanding educational opportunities so that our young people have the skills needed to fill the jobs of tomorrow. I’m excited to learn more about the challenges facing students, institutions and instructors and how we can build on our plan to reduce inequality and improve the economy by investing in training the people of this province.”

British Columbian students currently carry an average of $27,000 in debt after graduating from a four year program. This is the largest debt load in Canada west of the Maritimes. Making matters worse, the B.C. government charges the highest provincial interest rates on student loans in the country, and is one of only two provinces without a non-repayable student grant program.

Adrian Dix and B.C.'s New Democrats are committed to investing more resources into the critical area of skills training, and have proposed a $100 million non-repayable student grant program aimed at reducing inequality and improving the economy by making advanced education and skills training more accessible and affordable.

The tour will take Mungall and O'Mahony to communities across the province including Cranbrook, Kelowna, Vernon, Kamloops, Surrey, Chilliwack, Nelson, Burnaby, Prince George, and Victoria.



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